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The Role of Risk Perception in the Physical Activity Level of a Group of Black Women

Woody, Sarah (2010) The Role of Risk Perception in the Physical Activity Level of a Group of Black Women. Master's Thesis, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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Objective: Research has shown that a variety of socio-demographic and health-related variables influence physical activity. In this study, we explored the role of risk perception and other variables in the physical activity level of a group of Black women.Methods: The Healthy Black Family Project (HBFP) is an initiative set forth by the University of Pittsburgh's Center for Minority Health. The Family Health History intervention (FHH) is an aspect of the HBFP that assesses disease risk by examining family history. As part of the FHH, information is collected about participants' perceived risk for chronic disease, self rated health, self rated weight, and body mass index. In this study, we examined the relationship between these variables and the level of physical activity in two subgroups of Black women at baseline before the FHH intervention; one subgroup of women without disease and one subgroup of women who have at least one chronic condition (cardiovascular disease (CVD), diabetes or high blood pressure (HBP)). We then examined the change in physical activity level in both subgroups 4 weeks after the FHH intervention.Results: In the population of women with no health conditions, there was a significant relationship between physical activity level and risk perception for disease. Women with low risk perception for CVD and diabetes tended to be physically active. In the population of women with at least one health condition, there was a significant relationship between physical activity, self-reported general health and age. Women who perceived their health as excellent/very good/good tended to be physically active. Women over age 60 tended to be physically active and women under age 50 tended not to be physically active. There was no significant difference in the change in physical activity 4 weeks after the intervention between the two groups.Conclusions: The data suggests that Black women affected and unaffected with chronic disease may have different health beliefs and attitudes influencing their decisions to be physically active. The public health significance of this study is that increased knowledge of possible modifiers of physical activity can aid in the implementation of appropriate interventions.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairThomas, Stephen Bsbthomas@pitt.eduSBTHOMAS
Committee MemberKammerer, Candace Mcmk3@pitt.eduCMK3
Committee MemberFryer, Craig Scsf5@pitt.eduCSF5
Committee MemberGettig, Elizabeth Abetsy.gettig@mail.hgen.pitt.eduBGETTIG
Committee MemberButler, Jamesjbutler9@pitt.eduJBUTLER9
Committee MemberGarza, Mary Amgarza@pitt.eduMGARZA
Committee MemberGrubs, Robin Ergrubs@pitt.eduRGRUBS
Date: 28 June 2010
Date Type: Completion
Defense Date: 31 March 2010
Approval Date: 28 June 2010
Submission Date: 8 April 2010
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Public Health > Genetic Counseling
Degree: MS - Master of Science
Thesis Type: Master's Thesis
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: African American; chronic disease; exercise; Black; risk perception
Other ID:, etd-04082010-131702
Date Deposited: 10 Nov 2011 19:35
Last Modified: 19 Dec 2016 14:35


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